There are stages of your career, or running a small business, when you seem to go round in circles. There are stages when things suddenly are full steam ahead and you don’t remember when you last ate or smelt fresh air. There are also many times when you are scratching your ear and wondering where the next moment of focus or injection of activity will come from.
However theres one thing that seems consistent with me as I continue on my own path, and thats just how grateful I am to those around me that keep me moving forward or provide me with moments to be truly thankful for – however big or small they may seem.
So, going forward though it is my intention in this new Grateful Thanks! series to provide heartfelt thanks to just some of the individuals or companies who have supplied me with fabulous moments for my business in the past month.
Obviously I’d initially say that it goes without saying how grateful I am in life for the clients that choose me to be their photographer of choice. Each and every shoot I do is enjoyable because each and every one is unique! Horses and their owners may all share many things in life but each is unique which makes each session unique too…
These are just a few of my highlights for July…
The month started thanks to Zoe Bateson, the editor of Equestrian Life Magazine. The previous month I had submitted an article to Zoe which outlined some of the tips and hints I have to horse lovers wanting a photo shoot with their veteran horses. Older horses can often have medical, physical or mobility issues that need to be considered when you are considering their shoots. I wanted to advise owners of veteran horses that just because they may be older doesn’t mean they aren’t photogenic in any way and how I deal with shoots like this. When July 1st came around I’d discovered that Equestrian Life Magazine had published my article in their latest edition and it had made the front cover as a storyline within. This is the first time I’ve submitted an article and with thanks to my amazing coach, Rhea of Rhea Freeman PR, I established the right way to create, choose and submit and article of this nature for potential publication. To say I was over the moon was a serious understatement.
At the same time this incredible revamped website of mine was re-launched. None of this would have happened without Katie Mortimore, a great friend, fellow equine photographer and website designer. She listened to my brief and swung into action to create this softer more user friendly site. She’s nursed me through this revamp (whilst taking care of her very young teething daughter) and taken hold of the reins to ensure every step of the way was completely seamless. Even when we decided to switch hosts after a couple of weeks, she resolved this overnight and I don’t think the site ever skipped a beat. I’m no IT guru (understatement of the year… #dinosaur) so to have someone like Katie on my side is fabulous and the feedback from site users has been brilliant. I LOVE my new site and hope you all do too!
Later in July the Equestrian Creative Network was hosting their inaugural ECN International Awards and I was a finalist in 2 categories. Liam Killen, who runs ECN, has worked tirelessly in the creation of and promotion of these awards. For me to be a finalist was brilliant. I stood alongside some really well established people or companies, many of which have a far greater following and fan base than I have or may ever have. I was very happy to just be there but I genuinely thought I was just making up the numbers really. So to discover that I’d won one category and came second in another was a little bit overwhelming initially for me. Again, as with the article, I’d never been in this situation before so it was all a bit new to me. I confess I did a little dance in my office once the shock had passed. I’m amazed at the votes I received! Huge thanks to Samantha Hobden from Hay-Net Blog for her generous sponsorship of the Best Blog Post category I won and to both Liam & Sam for their continued promotion of my award since via both their platforms. The service that Liam provides all of the businesses, big and small, who use his platform is really second to none. I’ve never felt he’s not giving my small business any less publicity than some of the bigger and juicer ones who are part of ECN. Sadly it’s very easy to pay a sum of money to be part of a platform that you hope will give your small business a bit of visibility to potential clients only to feel that your money has basically been tipped in the wheelie bin of life. This isn’t true of ECN.
These awards in turn created another new skill for me to learn – the art of creating a Press Release!
July has been intense and a month full of firsts for me. It’s been jam packed full of so much stuff that picking just a handful of moments and connected people was tough. In the end, I guess that without these 5 specific people my month wouldn’t have been ultimately as exciting for me within the context of running the business. I learnt so much this month about so many things away from photography.
To everyone else this month who have supported me, given me an ear to bend or guided me when I need it the most, or just supplying the virtual glass of wine or kick up the backside, THANK YOU too!
Have a fabulous week!